Visiting Small Town America ~ Vinita, Oklahoma

Not too many miles down the road from us, on Route 66, is the great town of Vinita, Oklahoma.  My husband had some business there on Saturday morning, PLUS we were “storm watching”, but we knew we could work in some fun.

First stop was Summerside Winery. (!/summersidewinery) At Summerside, the people are friendly, the tours interesting, and the wine tasting is very enlightening and yummy. (Have you ever tried Mead? Wine made from honey)  Summerside comes complete with an intimate tea room.  We love to visit in the summertime, too.  Many times they have live music in the courtyard.  Check it out! And be sure and sample the raspberry and the blackberry ~ my faves!

Continuing on Route 66 is Clantons Cafe. Clanton’s is owned by Dennis and Melissa (Clanton) Patrick.  They are fourth generation operators as this cafe has been in Vinita since 1927! (then called ~ Busy Bee)  And busy they were, but that did not stop the friendly.  Here we were “strangers” in town, and we were visiting with the locals like it was home.  Clanton’s has been featured on Diner’s, Drive-In’s and Dives, and are famous for their Calf Fries, Chicken Fried Steak and Chicken ‘n Dressing.  And then there is the pie….Chocolate, Coconut or Lemon. The Coconut jumped in a sack to go home with us. Miraculously, it made it, too!  (

If the chicken ‘n dressing is good enough for Brooks and Dunn, it’s even better for me!  Many choices for your side dishes, but we tried the baked squash….yum!  Soup or salad, homemade rolls…see why the pie had to wait?

It comes natural to Mr. Patrick to make everyone feel at home. (I couldn’t for the life of me take a pic this day with eyes open…apologies….but look at that great SMILE!)  The servers took after his great example.

So there you go friends! I have planned a full day for you!  Summerside Winery, Antiquing, Clanton’s…..Eat, Sip, Shop and be MERRY!  We will do this again!

(One more thing I must share about Vinita.  Many years ago when we still lived in Joplin, MO, we were in route for an anniversary weekend to Tulsa, Oklahoma, when are car went crazy.  It needed a new alternator and it was a Saturday morning.  We coasted into the closest town, Vinita. Sitting at Wal-mart, an older gentleman stopped to help us. He directed us across the road to a car dealership.  This manager had no mechanics on duty, but GAVE my husband the shop and access to tools to help him.  We ended up with a part from O’Reilly’s and the gentlemen at O’Reilly’s gave us all the tools and help galore.  On down the road we went.  But we will never forget the kindness of SO MANY STRANGERS that day.  The people of Vinita, Oklahoma have our hearts forever! ♥)

Be nice to people, folks ♥

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10 Responses to Visiting Small Town America ~ Vinita, Oklahoma

  1. renae says:

    Sounds like good Oklahoma folks in the town of Vinita! The food looks yum and I believe I have tried the wine complements of my sister……great way to spend the day!

  2. Jeannette Wynne says:

    Love your roadside trips! Thanks for sharing them with us. I’m sorry I missed this great little town when travelling Route 66 from CA to OK last year!

    • OH….I’m sorry you missed it, too, Jeannette! Did you go through Catoosa, OK and see the Blue Whale? It is hard to catch everything or it would take triple days! Have a great one! ♥

      • Jeannette Wynne says:

        One fun serendipity along Rte.66 was in Weatherford, OK. The Thomas P.Stafford Air and Space Museum! A beautiful space museum in a very friendly little town:) Oh…another great find on that trip (not on 66) was the little town of Burlington, Kansas. Fabulous shops & town folk:)

  3. Dottie says:

    Sounds like you had another great day of fun!! A lot of history in one day!! 🙂

  4. Connie Lingle says:

    Vinita is up there in God’s country you know :)!! Years ago when I lived in the area, there used to be a buffalo ‘ranch’ just outside of Vinita on a two-lane highway. That is one of the things I always remembered about the little community.

    • I have current pics of that buffalo ranch, Connie. I took a “shortcut” coming back from my kids house in Jane, MO a few weeks ago and ended up there. It is now a large convenience store. But they have a couple of buffalo still and a statue, etc, in honor of the back in the day ranch. Do you recall all the roadway signs leading up to that ranch? The memories are always great ~ ♥

  5. I love the cork photo! Excellent! Also, the story about the car trouble in Vinita.

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